Ze, this picture is for you

On our trip we watched a ton of Ze Frank. We even sang a few of his songs. Some of which included the word “duckie.” Which is why I took a picture of this sign in Livingston, Montana. I stopped the van and said “I’m taking this one for Ze.”

Speaking of Ze, I’m not afraid, but I am terrorized. Terrorized that they’ll take away my electronic equipment on flights. Gosh, what will I need to do? Read a book? Next someone will figure out how to turn paper into some sort of weapon.

And people wonder why we drove to Montana.

Oh, Jeff Sandquist reminded me of how bad travel can get (and how being a Microsoft employee sure makes it nicer) with his posts from India.

Anyway, Ze, I wish I had your talent. While I try to acquire such (not blinking is HARD damn it!) you’ll just have to put up with my lame photo of a rubber ducky river rental sign.

Sorry.

WordPress.com getting new features

It seems like Matt Mullenweg and team are adding features every few hours lately. For those of you who are on WordPress.com, check out the “Dashboard.”

Since I went off the grid I noticed a new “Tag Surfer” and “My Comments” features. Tag surfer is cool — it shows me posts other people have made using the same tags I use. Very likely that we’ll have content that’s similar to each other. I can add new tags too and subscribe to content from other WordPress.com users.

Next to that is “My Comments.” It lists comment threads I’ve participated in. This is very interesting, but I wish I had the ability to pull out spam I see here. Some spam has gotten through WordPress’ excellent filters (the best in the industry — by far) but it’s old, so pulling it out takes too many steps. For those who have no clue what I mean, if you are inside WordPress there’s a “Manage” page, where I can look at my current comments. On that page I can kill spam with one click. It’s awesome. Makes it like playing a video game.

Some things. Both of these show that WordPress.com is becoming a community. Spam, for instance, doesn’t look like that, but if I kill spam on my blog it’ll kill it on yours too (if I prove to be a good spam killer).

I don’t want to talk too much about how Matt is using the community to kill spam cause I’m scared that the spammers will get smarter as a result (they will anyway, but might as well not help them along the path they’ll find) but it is interesting what he’s doing.

Anyway, just wanted to say thanks to the WordPress folks. I’m definitely not regretting my decision tonight to join up.

It’ll be interesting to compare it to Windows Live Spaces and to Six Apart’s new Vox service (I’m getting tons of email from people joining that service so know it’s gaining in popularity very quickly).

But, the short of it is that WordPress.com is going to pick up steam once new users see these features.

I came home to find 3,569 spams removed for me by WordPress.com’s spam filter. It is so superior to other blog comment engines that I’ve tried it isn’t funny. At least in my own experiences. It’ll be interesting to watch how good Vox is.

How to get a top Technorati blogger to link to you?

Nice list of ways to get a top Technorati blogger to link to you. Be warned, though, it’ll piss off Mena Trott, co-founder of Six Apart, who, at BlogHer, told us to please stop making lists. But, no need to beg for a link from a jerk like me who has gotten too self important to read all his email. No, just leave your URL in the comments here along with a good sentence explaining why your blog is worth checking out.

Or, you could always invite Maryam and me to speak at your conference like ConvergeSouth just did (October 13-14 in Greensboro, North Carolina).

Boiling (and freezing) in Yellowstone’s rivers


Click to Visit the Video’s page.

Ahh, the joys of owning a low-cost videocamera. Anyway, I bring you along to the Boiling River inside Yellowstone National Park. It’s an experience that I can’t quite explain to you other than to say my butt was freezing and my legs were burning when I shot this on my Sanyo Xacti HD1. Nice camera, by the way — stores videos on a SD card instead of tape, which makes it a lot easier to put up on Blip.TV, albeit the quality isn’t even close to the Sony. It’s also a lot smaller and a lot less expensive (about $700 at B&H).

On the video you’ll see Christian Long, CEO of DesignShare. He was a high-school teacher who now helps design schools around the world.

This video was originally shared on blip.tv by scobleizer with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.

Xbox team opens up its platform (HDTV next?)

There are a few things I learned at Microsoft that required me to really bite my lip cause of my NDA. This is one of them. And, yes, Fred, I totally agree that this is a game changer.

But the thing I’m keeping my eye on is the fact that my Xbox brings me new videos every few hours.

Now THAT has the potential to change everything from ABC news on down to YouTube.

Why?

Did I mention that Comcast in Half Moon Bay (only a handful of miles from Silicon Valley) does NOT have HDTV yet on its cable lineup? Isn’t that lame?

But Comcast DOES bring Internet access to my Xbox 360. I smell a route-around here. Media Center and BitTorrent, here I come!

Oh, speaking of HDTV. We bought a couple of Sony HVRZ1U’s. They cost about $4,000 over on B&H. But I wasn’t prepared for how stunning an image they produce when hooked up to my 60-inch Sony TV. Wow. Almost as good as the Discovery Channel (most people wouldn’t be able to tell the difference unless two images were put side-by-side).

I SSSSOOOOO want to show you the videos we did in Yellowstone. But all the video services like Google Video, Youtube, and Blip.TV compress the video all to heck to make it economical to distribute.

I wish the big video distribution networks would make HD capable by using something like RedSwoosh.

In the meantime, I gotta put my videos on Blip.TV.

Annoying spammer

OK, this is annoying. Someone is copying my blog at crazyfactor.com. That’s annoying enough. But his tools is pinging back blogs I link to. Look at Shelley Powers’ blog’s comments (I’ll bet that Shelley removes the double trackback soon, but it was there at 7:15 p.m.) My post is linked there twice. Once from me. Once from the annoying jerk at crazyfactor.

My mom’s basement

Come and see what we found in my mom’s basement after she died in May. No, we didn’t eat any of that food and thankfully World War III didn’t happen last week. Sometimes it seemed like it was possible, though.

Hey, I wonder if Make Magazine can find something to do with all of that? Maybe I’ll truck it to the next Maker Faire. Phillip Torrone, got any ideas (he’s the editor there and always comes up with unique ideas)?